AUSTIN (KXAN) — Now that we’re a fourth of the way through 2023, insurance companies have been able to gather data on claims for 2022. The data is not good news for Texas; we were the No. 1 state for severe weather insurance claims in the country.

KXAN Meteorologist Nick Bannin spoke with Chris Lewis from Allstate Insurance Company about new data on severe weather claims here locally.

Meteorologist Nick Bannin: Chris, you have some new data about just how much severe weather we had in Texas, and compare that to what we look like nationally, right?

Chris Lewis, Allstate: Yeah, absolutely. So probably not a list we want to be on top of, but we are number one in the country when it comes to severe weather, and have been there pretty consistently over the last few years.

Bannin: What types of severe weather did we have the most of in 2022 here in Texas?

Lewis: Yeah, so definitely the biggest problems we see are wind, and specifically hail. We had 458 separate hail events last year in the state, almost 1.5 million properties damaged from hail. So definitely, that’s the biggest problem we see.

Bannin: Now I imagine that’s just the cost of replacing roofs, because those are pretty expensive.

Lewis: They are, yes. And just like everything else, keeps going up — that cost of repair. So definitely a concern.

Bannin: What about here locally in Central Texas, specifically, the Austin Metro. Where did we rank, for severe weather claims within the state? What did we have to deal with last year?

Lewis: Yeah, absolutely. So kind of of the three big counties here, Williamson County was in the top 10 last year for the state of Texas. We came in at number eight for Williamson County, Travis and Hays weren’t on the list for last year. But if we look at some preliminary data for this year, it looks like Travis County is creeping up the list for sure.

Bannin: And remind people, it’s the list of…?

Lewis: What the list of counties in the state of Texas that are impacted by severe weather.

Bannin: Gosh, a list that we don’t want to be on. But at least one of our counties was. So you you’ve already gone over the rankings. You also have some data about the disparity between severe weather concern that people have versus people actually acting on it and preparing for severe weather. Can you talk about that?

Lewis: Absolutely. Yeah. So we did a joint study with Morning Consult that showed people are really concerned about it, right. They’re worried about it. Home is one of the biggest investments that you have. So the data showed that 68% of people were very concerned about these natural disaster events, yet 43% had a plan in place to deal with that disaster. So pretty startling numbers to show that disparity that you’re talking about.

Bannin: Why are so many people concerned but not acting?

Lewis: I think there’s a lot of, well, ‘this can’t happen to me, right? This is not something that can happen to me.’ But I also think there’s a lot of unknown like, ‘what am I supposed to do? What does that even look like? How do I put that plan in place?’

Bannin: For those that aren’t doing anything. What do you suggest that they do before the next storm?

Lewis: Yeah, perfect question. So I think the the couple of things that people could be doing right now, number one is reviewing their insurance policy, no matter what company you’re with. Whether that’s Allstate or anyone else, reach out to your agent, go over your coverages. Be sure you understand what you have, and more importantly, what you don’t have, before a storm hits. We don’t like surprises. Also get together a disaster ready kit, right. I think the ice storm we had a couple of years ago taught us that we need to have basic things like water and food and don’t forget about your pets when you’re putting that together. But also, you know, a charging block, make sure you can charge your iPhone and everything to make sure you’re ready for that.

Take an inventory of your stuff, right? We all have stuff stashed in the closet or under the bed that we don’t remember we have and when there is a disaster, we want to make sure that we get reimbursed for all of that stuff. So taking inventory, so you know what you have.

Last, but certainly not least, and probably the most important is have a plan. Just like when you go to cook your favorite meal, you’re going off a recipe, have a plan in place, practice that plan, make sure everyone in the house your kids know where they need to go, who they need to call if there is a disaster, because when the real thing happens, you want to make sure that everyone is prepared for that.